Are you Looking for the Best Maui 5-day itinerary?
If you’ve ever dreamed of visiting Maui, now is the perfect time to start planning a five-day adventure! Maui offers much more than just sandy beaches and breathtaking landscapes. We have been traveling to Maui yearly for the past 15 years. I have made this perfect Maui Itinerary 5 days.
From waterfalls to the best snorkeling spots, some endless activities and destinations will make your stay on Maui memorable.
In this Maui blog post, we break down an itinerary with our favorite places on the island – from must-haves for first-time visitors to hidden gems off the beaten path – so you can create an unforgettable journey through “the Valley Isle.”
Maui Travel Tips
Before embarking on our first full day in Maui, covering the basics is important. After arriving at the airport, we typically stop at Costco or Safeway to purchase weekly provisions. This includes snacks, water, soft drinks, and liquor for our villa.
Additionally, we arrange to rent beach chairs, an umbrella, a cooler, and a wagon for our stay. Are there kids in our group who want to try boogie or paddle boarding? Rentals are available for those as well.
We rent our beach equipment from Maui Vacation Equipment. The equipment is conveniently delivered directly to our villa lobby and picked up when we are finished.
If we don’t have snorkel gear, we rent it from Boss Frog’s on our first day to enjoy it throughout our trip. By taking care of all these details upon arrival, we can hit the ground running on our first full vacation day and explore all that Maui offers.
Lahaina and Upcountry Kula had devastating fires on August 8, 2023. Maui is accepting visitors; be prepared for a different West Maui. Please plan ahead and be kind. The residents have lost a great deal.
Day 1 of Maui Itinerary for 5 Days
Breakfast at the Gazebo
Rise and shine early to enjoy a delectable breakfast at the Gazebo. Although seating is limited, the experience is worth the wait. If the line extends to the top of the steps, expect to wait around 45 minutes before being seated.
A must-try dish is the Macadamia Nut Banana pancakes, accompanied by a serving of fried rice. The fried rice is so good it will leave you longing for more even after leaving Maui. Consider ordering a large portion of fried rice to bring back to your villa as a side dish when grilling fish.
If you are staying on the Ka’anapali side of the island, Honolua Bay is an excellent spot for snorkeling. It’s not your typical beach but rather a destination for underwater exploration.
A .6-mile roundtrip access trail takes you through a lush forest with hanging vines and primarily flat trails to get there.
The bay has a rocky shoreline, so bring water shoes if you have delicate feet. When you first enter the water, visibility may not be ideal, but don’t worry – keep going. Head towards the right side of the bay, and you’ll come across a beautiful coral reef.
Keep an eye out for turtles, as they’re often spotted here. We love snorkeling at Honolua Bay and highly recommend it as a must-visit spot.
Pick up Lunch at The Fish Market Maui
If you’re staying at a villa with a grill, check out The Fish Market Maui. It’s our go-to spot for picking up fresh fish to grill.
We always ask for their freshest catch, and they’re happy to give us tips on preparing it. They also have a selection of spices available for purchase. Don’t forget to try their delicious crab cakes – my favorite!
Suppose grilling is not an option, or you prefer to avoid cooking during your vacation. In that case, a relaxed eatery with limited seating is available, or you can opt for takeout instead.
Grab a Poke Bowl from Napili Market as an alternative
Do you enjoy Poke? If so, consider getting your Poke fix from Napilii Market rather than Maui Fish Market.
This spot is popular among locals for its delicious poke at a very reasonable price. You should try the Spicy or Hawaiian Poke; if you can’t decide, you could always choose a combination.
If some people in your group are not Poke fans, don’t worry – Joey’s Kitchen and Mama’s Ribs & Rotisserie are in the same shopping complex.
Relax on the Beach after Lunch
Are you looking for a great spot to spend your afternoon? Kapalua Beach and Airport Beach are both excellent choices. Not only do they offer stunning white sand, but they’re also perfect for snorkeling.
Remember to bring your beach chairs, umbrella, and snorkel gear to enjoy these magnificent beaches fully.
During our stay at the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort North, we were delighted to discover the fantastic snorkeling opportunities right before the villas, extending to Airport Beach.
We feel fortunate to have easy access to such stunning sealife and a gorgeous beach without having to venture too far.
Enjoy the beautiful Maui Sunset
Take a moment to unwind on the sandy shores of Maui and witness the breathtaking sunset. Watch for a stunning green flash as the sun dips below the horizon. It’s sure to be a sunset you’ll never forget.
Have Dinner at Monkeypod
If you’re looking for a great dinner spot, I highly recommend checking out MonkeyPod at Whaler’s Village. They make some of the best Mai Tais on the island, and their No Ka ‘Oi drink is also our favorite.
Trust me; you won’t want to miss out on trying the Pumpkin Patch ravioli – it’s not a typical Maui dish, but it’s amazing. The Truffle Oil Garlic fries are another must-try appetizer. We recommend the delicious Hamakua Wild Mushroom and Truffle Oil Pizza for your main course.
And if you still have room for dessert, the Banana or Strawberry cream pie are both delicious! Monkeypod is one of our favorite Maui restaurants, and we usually visit there multiple times during our stays.
Day 2 of Maui Travel Itinerary for 5 Days
Discover the Wonder of Haleakala National Park
Discover the wonders of Haleakala National Park, where you can bask in the beauty of the Haleakala crater, witness an incredible sunrise or sunset, and embark on a scenic hike.
If catching the sunrise at Haleakala is a must-do, we suggest swapping Day 1 with Day 2 to allow you to take advantage of the time difference.
Keep in mind that tickets must be purchased in advance for sunrise viewing.
If you choose to do sunrise, you may want to consider doing this Haleakala Sunrise tour with Breakfast. Another fun option that is very popular is biking Haleakala. If you choose to do the biking tour, be cautious, and we don’t recommend it if you haven’t ridden a bike in years.
We prefer to ease into our Maui vacation and suggest saving this activity for Day 2. However, if you plan to explore the park during the day or catch the sunset, there’s no need to worry about purchasing park tickets ahead of time.
Bring a jacket and dress appropriately, as it is much colder at the summit.
Explore the Upcountry of Maui. There are so many options for exploring, depending on your interest.
Explore the Kula Botanical Gardens.
If you’re looking for a breathtaking and serene place to explore in Maui, the Kula Botanical Gardens must be on your list.
Situated on the slopes of Haleakala, this 8-acre garden is filled with various tropical flora worth visiting. From orchids and bromeliads to native trees and succulents, the Kula Botanical Gardens have a diverse range of plants that will give you an appreciation for Maui’s natural beauty.
The garden offers stunning views of the island and the Pacific Ocean, making it a great photo-op spot.
Don’t miss out on this unique experience the next time you’re looking for what to see on Maui.
Tour a local farm such as the Ali’I Kula Lavender Farm or O’o Farm
If you’re looking for a unique and authentic experience on Maui, consider touring a local farm like Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm or O’o Farm. Both farms offer guided tours that allow you to explore their beautiful grounds and learn about sustainable farming practices.
At Ali’i Kula, you’ll be surrounded by acres of lavender fields and may even be lucky to glimpse their resident peacocks roaming about. Meanwhile, O’o Farm offers a hands-on experience where you can pick organic produce from the garden and enjoy a farm-to-table lunch.
Whichever farm you visit, you will see a different side of Maui and support local agriculture. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to connect with nature and learn about the local farming industry.
Upcountry Lunch Options
When it comes to eating Upcountry on Maui, there are many options. However, if you’re looking for a meal with a view and a taste of local flavor, consider stopping at the O’o farm, Ulupalakua Ranch Store Grill, Kula Bistro, or Hali’imaile General Store for lunch.
Each venue offers a personalized experience that showcases different aspects of the island. At the O’o farm, you can indulge in a farm-to-table lunch experience surrounded by lush greenery and stunning views.
At the same time, Ulupalakua Ranch Store Grill serves unique juicy burgers and sandwiches alongside its famed Maui views.
Kula Bistro offers a bakery with delightful desserts and large portion dishes that emphasize the unique flavors of the island, and Hali’imaile General Store serves up Hawaiian comfort food elevated with a modern twist.
Each spot offers a unique look at what makes Maui’s food and drink scene so special.
Take a Tour of Ocean Vodka Organic Farm & Distillery
If you plan a trip to Maui, a stop should be on any vodka lover’s agenda: Maui Ocean Vodka. Not only is their vodka made with deep ocean mineral water and organic sugar cane, but their facility offers a stunning view of the island that should not be missed.
Take a tour of the distillery to learn about their sustainable practices and unique distillation process, then head to their tasting room to try their award-winning spirits.
And when you’re done, don’t forget to take home a bottle as a souvenir – their distinctive round blue glass bottles are sure to stand out on any bar cart.
Maui Ocean Vodka is a must-see attraction for any traveler exploring the island’s unique offerings. Make reservations for this in advance as it is very popular.
Maui Wine Tasting Room and its’ picturesque vineyard, Ulupalakua ranch
If you are looking for a unique tasting experience on Maui, look no further than Maui Wine‘s tasting room. The picturesque Ulupalakua Ranch vineyard offers stunning views of the verdant rolling hills and is the perfect place to sit and relax with a glass of wine.
The winery produces various wines, including pineapple wine, which is not to be missed. Take a vineyard tour and learn about the ranch’s history and how the wines are made.
Whether you’re a wine aficionado or just looking for something fun and different to do on Maui, the Maui Wine tasting room is worth a visit.
Consider booking this Private Farm Tour, a private tour of three upcountry farms.
If you’re looking for a unique way to experience the natural beauty of Maui, you won’t miss the chance to hike the Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area. Located in Upcountry Maui, this hidden gem boasts stunning panoramic views of the island, including the neighboring islands of Lanai and Molokai.
As you trek through the lush forests and explore the volcanic landscapes, you’ll encounter an array of native flora and fauna, including towering evergreens and colorful wildflowers.
Whether you’re an experienced hiker or just looking for a stroll with family and friends, this is a must-see destination on your list of what to see on Maui.
Consider taking this Private Upcountry tour, which is an 8-hour tour of Upcountry, including Kula and Makawao.
Makawao for its local art galleries, shops, and restaurants.
If you’re looking for a charming town to visit in Maui, Makawao should be at the top of your list. With its quaint streets lined with local art galleries, unique shops, and delicious restaurants,
Makawao offers visitors a taste of the island beyond typical tourist attractions. Whether you’re interested in perusing local artwork, shopping for one-of-a-kind items, or indulging in some mouth-watering cuisine, Makawao has something for everyone.
Stroll through this picturesque town, and you’ll surely find some hidden gems that will make your Maui vacation all the more memorable.
Surfing Goat Dairy for some goat cheese
If you’re a cheese lover and visiting Maui, visiting Surfing Goat Dairy is a must. Located in beautiful upcountry Maui, this family-owned dairy farm has produced some of the freshest and tastiest goat cheese for over a decade.
Take a farm tour and meet the friendly goats who call this place home. Watch the cheesemakers create signature flavors like mango, garlic, and truffle. After your tour, sample some delicious goat cheese and purchase some as a tasty souvenir. A visit to Surfing Goat Dairy is a unique and delicious addition to any Maui itinerary.
Are you feeling tired? Upcountry offers many activities that are difficult to fit into just one day. Despite visiting Maui annually for the past 15 years, we are continually amazed by the new restaurants and activities we discover. This is one of the many reasons we adore Maui so much.
Day 3 of Maui Itinerary for 5 days
Whale Watching or Snorkel Trip
If you are visiting between December and April, schedule a whale-watching trip. This is one of the main reasons we love to travel to Maui in February and March. These animals are magnificent, and the warm, shallow waters are where they come to breed and birth their babies.
There are many options for taking whale-watching tours. The whale watch can be combined with snorkeling or just the watch. It depends on your interests. We highly recommend Captain Steve’s Rafting.
There are so many wonderful restaurants in the Lahaina area. I have an entire blog post for Best Breakfast in Lahaina & Ka’anapali, Maui, and Best Ka’anapali Restaurants for Ocean View Dining Guide 2024
Lunch at Whaler’s Village
After a morning on the ocean, head to Whaler’s Village for Lunch. Several great restaurants exist at Whaler’s Village, such as Hula Grill or Leilani’s, which are great for an ocean view. Joey’s Kitchen is located on the lower level for something more casual.
After lunch, walk around Whaler’s Village to shop.
Have Shave Ice for Dessert
Wanting a dessert after lunch? Try either shave ice at Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice
There are several Ululani’s Shave Ice shops around the Island. I highly recommend trying a shave ice from Ululani’s before you leave Maui.
After a satisfying lunch, a dessert is the perfect way to finish it.
Ululani’s has been voted the best shave ice on the island for years. They use premium syrups and real fruit purees to make their fluffy shave ice. My personal favorite Ululani’s treat is Sunset Beach shave ice over Macadamia Nut Ice Cream and a snowcap topper.
Attend a traditional Hawaiian Luau
When looking for something to see on Maui, there’s nothing quite like experiencing a luau. The Old Lahaina Luau offers a full evening of entertainment, traditional Hawaiian cuisine, and unforgettable cultural experiences.
The Old Lahaina Luau has been closed due to the Lahaina Fire 8/8/23 but should be accepting reservations soon.
At the Old Lahaina Luau, you’ll begin with a lei greeting and be transported back to when islanders gathered for special events. Each meal course, from kalua pork to haupia pudding, is expertly prepared and served along with hula dancers and live music with the backdrop of the ocean.
There are many other options for luaus on Maui, depending on your price range and where you stay. Another great choice is the Maui Nui Luau at the Sheraton Resort.
Day 4 of Maui Itinerary for 5 Days
Discover the beauty of the Road to Hana
Embark on a thrilling journey along the winding Road to Hana, where you’ll discover breathtaking waterfalls and lush rainforests. With so many sights to see, it’s hard to cover everything in detail.
But be warned, if you stop at every recommended location, you may not make it to Hana before nightfall. My post on the Road to Hana has the must-stop locations for a perfect day trip.
To enhance your experience, use the Maui Revealed book and the Shaka app, which offers an audio tour of the Road to Hana; we prefer to drive straight through and stop at sights on the way back to Lahaina.
For a delectable lunch, we recommend visiting Thai Food from Pranee. Another favorite place that we like to stop for lunch is Huli Huli Chicken. We happened upon this open-air stand off the Road to Hana over a decade ago, and it’s been a must-stop for us ever since.
If you plan to visit the Honokalani Black Sand Beach, reservations are required to enter Waianapanapa State Park.
Visit Ho’okipa Beach to see Turtles
If you plan a trip to Maui, you won’t want to miss Ho’okipa Beach. This little gem is a great place to see sea turtles sunbathing on the shore, and the views are stunning.
It’s the perfect spot to stop back from a long day of exploring the Road to Hana or at the start of your journey to soak in the island’s beauty.
You might even glimpse some windsurfers or surfers riding the waves if you’re lucky. So put on your sunscreen and grab your camera- Ho’okipa Beach is a must-see regarding what to see on Maui.
Are you not interested in doing the drive yourself? I don’t blame you; the roads are narrow and winding. Being a passenger and taking in the gorgeous sights is much easier. Click here for the Best Road to Hana tour.
Plan on Dinner in Paia
Are you looking to experience Maui’s charm while indulging in some retail therapy? Look no further than Paia!
This picturesque town perfectly blends souvenir shopping and stunning Hawaiian artwork displays. Whether you’re in the mood for leisurely window shopping or eager to find that perfect gift for someone special, Paia is a must-visit destination.
Mama’s Fish Market is my top recommendation for those seeking a more upscale dining experience in the area. Having traveled extensively and dined at many exceptional restaurants, Mama’s is truly the best. However, make reservations well in advance – I’ve already secured ours nine months in advance.
Day 5 of Maui Itinerary for 5 Days
Start with a hearty breakfast from Nalu’s South Shore Grill in Kihei
When starting your day in Kihei, you can’t go wrong with breakfast at Nalu’s South Shore Grill. This cozy cafe offers a delightful array of breakfast dishes that will leave you satisfied and ready to take on whatever your day holds.
From fluffy pancakes to savory omelets, there is something for everyone on the menu. Nalu’s is located in the heart of Kihei, making it a great pit stop before exploring all the amazing sights and attractions Maui offers.
Explore Makena Beach, also known as Big Beach and Oneloa
Regarding what to see on Maui, the sea turtles at Makena Beach should be on your list. There’s something truly awe-inspiring about watching these gentle giants spend their sweet time lounging on the golden sand. You can’t help but feel a sense of privilege and respect as you observe them up close.
And even better, the crystal clear waters of Makena provide a great opportunity for you to join these majestic creatures in their natural habitat for a swim or snorkel, provided you keep a respectful distance, of course!
Makena Beach is 1.5 miles long and 100 yards wide with gorgeous fine white sand. Because of its size, it usually doesn’t feel overcrowded. It is part of Makena State Park. Little Beach is just North of Big Beach, much smaller at 660 feet long, and more secluded but crowded. Little Beach is also known as Pu’u Olai Beach.
Another beach part of the Makena State Park is the black sand beach, One’uli, also known as Naupaka Beach. The unique black sand is made of lava rock, unlike typical beach sand made of ground coral and shells.
Are you looking for an adventure more exciting than just lounging on the beach? Consider going on an ocean kayaking trip. This stunning and unspoiled coastline is home to Hawaiian green sea turtles, and kayaking is an excellent way to get a close-up view of these gentle giants.
As you paddle through the crystal-clear waters, watch for vibrant schools of tropical fish and colorful coral reefs. It’s a breathtaking sight that makes you feel like you are floating in an underwater paradise.
Whether you’re an experienced kayaker or a first-timer, this adventure is informative and interactive, so add it to your Maui itinerary. It’s a unique experience that will create memories that will stay with you forever.
Lunch near Kihei at Maui Brewing Company
When it comes to grabbing lunch in South Maui, there are many options to choose from- but one spot that shouldn’t be missed is Maui Brewery in Kihei. Not only do they serve up delicious burgers and fries, but their selection of craft beers is top-notch.
Plus, the atmosphere is always fun and laid-back. Maui Brewery offers a rotating selection of house-made beers, such as their popular Bikini Blonde Lager and Big Swell IPA. Don’t forget to ask your server for recommendations on which beer will pair best with your meal.
But if you’re looking for a quick and tasty bite with some great local flavor, Coconuts in Kihei is a great spot. With an expansive menu ranging from poke bowls to fish tacos, there’s something for everyone.
The outdoor seating area is also perfect for soaking up some sun while you eat. Maui Brewery and Coconuts offer a taste of the island you won’t want to miss.
Sunset sail. End your stay with an unforgettable sunset cruise to marvel at Maui’s beauty.
As your Maui vacation draws close, there’s no better way to bid farewell than with a sunset sail across the ocean. Sea Maui offers some of the best sunset cruises on the island.
As you sail into the distance, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of Maui’s stunning coastline and the vibrant colors only a Maui sunset can provide.
Take in the fresh ocean breeze, unwind, and let the beauty of Maui surround you. It’s the perfect way to end your trip and create unforgettable memories that will stay with you long after you return home.
Final Thoughts on 5 Day Maui Travel Itinerary
In conclusion, a 5 day Maui travel itinerary is the perfect way to experience all that this breathtaking island has to offer. From driving along the stunning Road to Hana to exploring the scenic Upcountry and witnessing the majestic Haleakala, your days will be filled with adventure and wonder. And what better way to top off your stay in Maui than attending a traditional Luau, where you can immerse yourself in the rich Hawaiian culture and cuisine? It’s safe to say that these are just some of our top choices for an unforgettable trip to Maui.
Have more time on Maui than 5 days? Check out our 10 Day Maui Itinerary
Our Trusted Resources
Booking.com: for booking accommodations
Fare Drop: for finding the best airfare deals.
Discover Cars: for car rentals
Airalo: for eSIM card
Trainline: for booking train tickets
Coumbia: great clothes and accessories for outdoor adventures.
International Drivers Permit: for getting your IDP
More Maui tips?
- Best breakfast in Lahaina & Ka’anapali, Maui
- Best Ka’anapali Restaurants for Ocean View Dining Guide 2024
- More time on Maui? Check out this Maui Travel Plan!
- Road to Hana Day Trip Guide
Go Grab Life, and don’t forget always to wear sunscreen!